For from within, out of men’s hearts, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly. All these evils come from inside and make a man ‘unclean’. – Holy Bible (St Mark 7:21-23)
Today some individuals place a very low price tag on human life and murder seems to be their pleasure. Those in the legal profession speak of individuals who murder for many reasons, ranging from religious, political, financial, ritualistic, emotional, sexual, and other causes that may be classified as weird or just plain wicked.
Bringing the evil act of murder within my radar today comes on the heels of five “inner heart” defects which I previously scrutinised, namely: evil thoughts, sexual immorality, lewdness, theft and greed. The Holy Bible in St Mark 7:21-23 identifies 13 of these maladies that drive mankind to view his fellow man as less than valuable. Correcting such disorders necessitates radical “inner heart” surgery where the only highly qualified heart Specialist, Jesus Christ, remedies the inner problem when given the opportunity to do so.
Gerald and Kathleen Hill, in The People’s Law Dictionary, describe murder as “the killing of a human being by a sane person, with intent, malice aforethought (prior intention to kill the particular victim or anyone who gets in the way) and with no legal excuse or authority”.
Some of the many expressions often used for murder are homicide, assassination, slaying, lynching, dispatching, knifing, abolishing, taking out and wasting.
According to the United Nations Global Study On Homicide, published in 2013, almost half-million people worldwide were intentionally murdered in 2012. With close to 750 million people living in countries with elevated homicide levels, this form of unlawful death is said by the United Nations to be “the worst of crimes”. The question is: What corrective measures does the Master Surgeon use to rectify such a serious damage within the chambers of the “inner heart”, where the thoughts, emotions and purposes reside? Let us explore some of these measures. Loving the unlovely and unlovable:
The personalities of some individuals, young and old, are so lovely that it is an absolute pleasure being in their presence. On the other hand, there are people who are like bad odours from which many keep their distance. They are often offensive, habitually critical of others, mostly negative, display a superiority complex and are very selfish in their behaviour.
In reference to this group of people, I have heard comments such as: “I wish they were dead”; “they need wiping off the map”, “they need poisoning”. Although it may be difficult to love such unpleasant individuals, developing those brutal thoughts is wrong and may reflect a flaw in your own “inner heart” which may require the placing of a very special kind of love the Master Surgeon offers.
The nature of this exceptional quality of love that the Master Surgeon inserts in the “inner heart” is spoken of in Romans 13:10. It states “love does no wrong to one’s neighbour . . . . [It never hurts anybody]”. With the activation of this love after surgery, the chances of developing such murderous thoughts are very slim. This love will always allow you to place a very high premium on the lives of human beings and help you develop a positive attitude toward the unlovable.
The words of young Ghanaian-born writer Israelmore Ayivor gripped me when he said: “Love in your heart is good medicine for long life. Hatred in your blood is the major cause of heart failure! Love people, get transfused with a fresh blood and you’ll live long!” Sound advice. Loving your enemies:
If anyone tells you it is easy to love your enemies, don’t believe them. It is not. However, the love which the specialist surgeon, Jesus Christ, imbeds in the walls of your “inner heart” has the capacity to help you “love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you . . .” (St Matthew 5:44). When this love is resident in your “inner heart”, developing deadly thoughts of murder toward individuals who have malicious intent toward you will become remote.
There was a young man who once lived a life of crime. He rose to be leader of a gang and was very skilful at using his blade. After experiencing “inner heart” surgery, he said his former passion to kill was removed. He related an incident after Jesus transformed his “inner heart”, where a knife-wielding youngster attacked him. He quickly got the knife away from him and placed the blade at the youngster’s throat. He told him that before his heart surgery, he would have killed him, but the love that Jesus gave him would not allow him to do it. He released his attacker. Loving your brother/sister:
The words in 1 John 3:15 are eye-opening for all those who claim to have a relationship with the “inner heart” surgeon. “Anyone who hates (detests) his brother (sister) is at heart a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding (persevering) within him (her).” The Apostle John, under inspiration, is saying that church people who develop and practise hatred in their hearts towards their own brothers or sisters within the church are intentional murderers and are not going to heaven.
Encouraging hatred in the inner heart makes it easy for cancers of bitterness, resentment and unforgiveness to come on board and create a fertile environment for spiritual heart failure. Individuals with such diseases in their “inner hearts” need corrective surgery performed by the Master Surgeon, so that genuine love can replace such poisons. Admitting to such infirmities and permitting Jesus to perform His specialist inner work will result in a renewed and beautifully functioning “inner heart”.
In a world where it is easy for the heart of mankind to cultivate thoughts of murder and then take the next step of following through with those thoughts, there is a special kind of love that thinks very highly of human life. It is priceless. Test it today by consulting the “inner heart Surgeon” and enjoy the difference.
Reverend Haynesley Griffith is a marriage and family life consultant. Email email@example.com.